What Does the Surgical Recovery Timeline Look Like? 

Even after a surgical procedure is complete, the surgical journey is not. Recovery after surgery will vary from person to person and differs based on the surgical procedure performed. Prior to your surgery, our Milwaukee area based Parkins Plastic Surgery team will review all the necessary pre-and post-op instructions to ensure your recovery goes as smoothly as possible.   

0-3 Days Post-Op   

After surgery, patients wake up in a compression garment they’ll wear for the first four to eight weeks post-op, depending on the procedure. This garment evenly distributes pressure to improve blood circulation, decrease fluid buildup, and minimize swelling. Increased bruising and swelling are typical during the first 2-3 days and will slowly diminish over the next 2-3 weeks. Short walks to the bathroom, kitchen, etc., every hour during waking time is essential to prevent blood clots. Applying an ice compress on and off for the first 72 hours can aid in decreasing swelling and pain during recovery. At the pre-op appointment, we provide prescriptions for post-op pain management. All our patients meet with Dr. Maida Parkins in person 1-2 days after surgery to confirm the healing process is going as expected.    

3-8 Weeks Post-Op   

At three weeks post-op, patients meet with Dr. Parkins’ nurse to discuss their recovery process and massage techniques, remove the surgical tape, and receive silicone scar gel to help reduce the appearance of scars. At four weeks, patients can remove the compression garment if they underwent breast surgery and can submerge in water again (bath, swimming, etc.). Patients can also travel long distances after four weeks post-op. For most procedures, patients can resume exercise or other strenuous activities after four weeks. Sexual intercourse no longer needs to be avoided after the four-week mark as well. Eight weeks post-op is when abdominoplasty patients can remove their surgical garments and resume exercise or lifting over ten pounds.    

4 Months Post-Op   

Four months after surgery, patients meet with Dr. Parkins for one last required follow-up appointment. During this appointment, patients complete a set of post-op photos to see the before and after results, practically fully healed. Some numbness or other minor discomfort may still be present and is completely normal. Questions and concerns can be easily addressed through our patient app or by phone before, during, and after your surgical journey.    

1 Year Post-Op   

The one-year post-op appointment is optional but, in some cases, may be recommended by Dr. Parkins. Patients can also request a one-year post-op appointment if they feel it is necessary. If any concerns arise between four months and one year after surgery (or beyond), we can schedule a follow-up appointment to meet with Dr. Parkins and address those concerns in person. 

Dr. Maida Parkins and her entire team at Parkins Plastic Surgery dedicate themselves to ensuring patients feel safe, well-informed, and ready for surgery. Schedule a visit to Parkins Plastic Surgery to start your surgical journey today. Call us at (262) 269-1050 or submit a contact form online to arrange a visit. 

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